The government’s total exemption of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) from the purview of the Right to Information (RTI) Act could not have come at a more inopportune time.
The investigating agency has been placed on the same footing as security and intelligence agencies—something that exempts them from RTI.
It does not matter what the intent behind this step was: CBI now is close to being a national political police—removed from public scrutiny, answerable to an increasingly arbitrary executive and used to hound opponents of the government.
CBI is investigating some very serious crimes by people in high places. Unless it is brought back into the RTI fold again, allegations that the government is trying to protect such persons will have more than a ring of truth to them. If only for the sake of its credibility, the government should reverse this appalling decision.